"What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us." -Emerson

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Be careful what you wish for...

"Be careful what you wish for..." should be the motto for parenthood. It seems you are in a constant state of wishing your child would be in the next stage due to the exhausting nature of your current one. Yet, once you get there, you wish you could go back to the previous exhausting state because you miss it.

Parenthood can often become a wishing game, I've learned. From infancy to toddlerhood, I have caught myself on more than one occasion wishing for the opposite stage. Here are some of my wishful examples towards my own daughter's stages:

During infancy, I wished she would sleep during the night. In toddlerhood, I wished she would sleep during the day.

During infancy, I wished she'd start moving (roll, crawl, walk, you name it...). In toddlerhood, I wished she would stay still (sit, read, play dead).

During infancy, I wished she would tell me what she wanted. In toddlerhood, I wished she would stop telling me what she wanted.

During infancy, I wished she would poop less. In toddlerhood, I wished she'd poop more (in the big girl potty, that is).

If you are not careful, you can spend your whole parenthood wishing for something to come or that has already been. It is easy to focus on the difficulties of the stage you are in without focusing on the joys.

Right now, I wouldn't give up watching this toddler learning to speak, exploring the world around her, or finding humor in the most unusual of places. Yes, it is hard sometimes as I covet the days when I could leave her in a room while I took a shower or used the bathroom, without fear for her safety or that of my house. But, the stage she is in right now, is just filled with so much wonderment and laughter that I wouldn't go backwards nor would I speed up to the future.

Each stage is but a short season we get to enjoy these little people as they learn about the world around them. Each stage brings with it a new set of challenges, a new set of enjoyment, and a new set of clothes. I would hate to think I missed any of the precious moments I am given with this little one because I was too preoccupied with where we had already been or where we were heading. Perhaps one of the greatest challenges of parenthood is learning to live in the moment, and to enjoy every midnight feeding, every crayon mark on the wall, every school play, every soccer game, every school dance, every first date, every college acceptance. Because the truth of the matter is before long, we'll be wishing we could do it all over again.

Here's to enjoying the moment....

Until next time,

1 comment:

Hard Corps Wife said...

I know what you mean... it is exciting to look forward to the new things but sometimes that means more work. ;-) I cherish every single day because I know in the blink of an eye, I'll be "the mother-in-law"... agghhh! That puts things in perspective!